Bill would end redirection of state fees

By WALTER C. JONES Morris News Service ATLANTA – Legislation introduced Wednesday would prohibit politicians from tapping special-purpose trust funds for uses other than the stated reason for the fees. The drop in tax collections since the last recession led the last two governors and legislative budget writers to use as much as $65 million in fees for general-government purposes. That has angered the special-interest groups that originally lobbied for those funds.
Environmental groups pushed for the creation of the solid-waste trust fund and a tire-recovery fund to serve as a source to cover the costs of cleaning up waste sites. Joshua's Law created another fund, named for a teenager killed in a car crash, that is supposed to pay for driver-education courses for new motorists. Diverting most of the money going into those programs leaves them underfunded. Local-government officials also object to redirecting those funds because they are required by law to run those programs, using local funds to replace those redirected. Rep. Jay Powell, a former Camilla mayor, sponsored House Bill 811 to end the practice. It phases out the fees over five years if they are not used for the stated purpose. The measure has 60 cosponsors, including House Appropriations Chairman Terry England, the Auburn Republican who oversees the budget process that diverted the fees. Besides Republicans like Powell and England, the cosponsors include the House Democratic leader, Stacey Abrams of Atlanta.


More Local

Crews work to clear storm damage, restore power

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Power reports that fewer than 300 of its customers remain without power after severe storms crossed the state. ... Read More


10 Things to Know for Today

Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Monday: 1. UNCERTAINTY OVER FERGUSON DECISI ... Read More


Sunday TV Page - Correction

Due to a production error with our printing partner, the Sunday TV page printed with a font error which caused it to be unreadable. We regre ... Read More


Farewell to Shelnutt’s

Family-run grocery closes in Arnco

The closing of Shelnutt's Grocery in Arnco marks another passage of time that will forever remain in the memories of those who passed throug ... Read More


Cheek to head state school facilities association

Coweta County School System Director of Facilities Ronnie Cheek has been named president of the Georgia Association of School Facility Admin ... Read More

Bullying in Coweta County: A victim’s story

Twelve-year-old Jennifer Jarvis knows first-hand the effects of bullying. Jarvis claims she has been bullied since the first days of element ... Read More